Rugby: Waikato win relegates BOP
Saturday, October 5, 2013
Bay of Plenty were relegated from the ITM Cup Premiership in agonising fashion today, with Jackson Willison's 76th minute try condemning the Steamers to life in the second tier.
It was the second late loss in the space of a week for the Bay, after an 80th-minute penalty to Counties Manukau last Sunday left them adrift at the bottom of the table.
The Steamers needed a win in Tauranga this afternoon to stave off relegation for another week, and they looked like doing just that for much of the match.
But, in a disjointed game in which neither side took good care, one last loss of possession gave Waikato their first real crack at the line with five minutes to play.
And, after a solid scrum gave Sam Christie the chance to attack the defensive line, he slipped the ball for Willison to score Waikato's only try of the game.
Constant infringements from the home side had kept Waikato in the game, with Trent Renata kicking seven penalties to counter Bay of Plenty's three tries.
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